Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Case Made for Restoring, Boosting Special Ed. Research Spending


This afternoon, a U.S. Senate subcommittee on labor, health, and human services boosted the budget for the National Center for Special Education Research by $10 million, though it remains to be seen whether that will be accepted by the Senate appropriations committee and the rest of Congress. Below, you'll read about why advocates and researchers want special education research spending to be restored to previous levels, a case they made during a briefing on the issue earlier today.
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Students with disabilities still don't graduate at the same rate as their peers; they score far worse on national tests, and they are far less likely to get jobs after high school. So, for all those reasons, it makes no sense to cut back on special education research spending, researchers and advocates said at a briefing on Capitol Hill today.
"That research has helped us debunk many of the myths that these children are unteachable," said Margaret McLaughlin of the University of Maryland and president of the Council for Exceptional Children, which organized the briefing.
Her organization and others are fighting to have the budget for the National Center for Special Education Research restored. President Barack Obama recommended a cut to the center's budget in his spending proposal last year, and Congress cut the center's budget even more than the president proposed—from $71 million to about $50 million. While that was only a sliver of the extensive cuts made to education spending last year, it represents nearly a third of the center's budget.
Read more of Nirvi Shah's On Special Education article HERE.
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